Latest Posts

New Food Paradigm

August 1, 2015
Steven Carruthers

With the fascination of images beamed back to earth of Pluto, and the discovery of an Earth-like planet located 1400 light years away in the Cygnus constellation, it seems appropriate that we continue the space theme with our story of eight aspiring astronauts cocooned in a Mars-like habitat on top of Hawaii’s Mauna Loa volcano. The aim of the mission was to study the group’s cohesiveness over the eight months of simulated long-duration space travel, to figure out how to pick a crew that works well together, that’s able to stay positive, happy and productive. The mission demonstrated that plants grown hydroponically not only supplemented a diet of freeze-dried food, but also had a positive effect on crew behaviour. Read More »

Setting up a DFT (Deep Flow Technique) system

August 1, 2015
Rick Donnan

I am setting up a DFT grow tank for lettuce in South America, first one, and then more in time. The size is 4m wide x 20m long and 25cm deep with a 1000L control tank. I have had five similar sized sub-irrigation tanks with gravel before, but this is my first DFT system. I want to use a swimming pool pump with a venturi to circulate and aerate the nutrient solution, and aim to do a total replacement of the grow tank volume every 2 hours. Where in the system would be best to place the pump? Between the control tank and the grow tank, pumping from the control tank into the grow tank with an overflow back to the control tank. Or the other way around? Answer by RICK DONNAN Read More »

From Soil to Substrate. . .

August 1, 2015

The development of the berry industry in Australia
Raspberry and blackberry production under protected cropping in Australia is set to expand. The forecast growth will come from new higher yielding varieties, year-round production, and increasing consumer demand for fresh, healthy, convenient and tasty berries. By JONATHAN ECCLES Read More »

Powerplants builds cutting edge hydroponic facility in Victoria

July 31, 2015
Powerplants staff at Kaiteki is: (L-R) Adam Beardall (Design & Estimation Manager), Carl van Loon (Director), Simon Gomme (Director) and Bart Post (Design & Project Manager).

Powerplants Australia has partnered with Kaiteki Fresh Australia Pty Ltd (a subsidiary of Japanese corporate giant Mitsubishi Plastics Inc.) to build an Australian first hydroponic growing facility in Gippsland, Victoria. The new Kaiteki Fresh facility in Bunyip, which officially opened on 16 July, will produce up to eight times as much high quality, high nutrient spinach, while using less water and no pesticides.  Read More »

New base for AIS Greenworks

July 28, 2015
Basic CMYK

AIS Greenworks have taken the first step in their endeavours to better service clients in Central and Western Australia by opening a store in the growers’ heartland of Virginia, on the rural outskirts of Adelaide, South Australia. Read More »

Reducing Food Waste

July 1, 2015
Steven Carruthers

Ordering fresh fruit and veg online is not a new concept. In Australia, Coles and Woolworths supermarkets, and farmers markets such as Harris Farms, aussiefarmers and sydneyfresh, all offer online shopping for fresh food, including free home delivery offers. Among the mix are also many online specialty e-services such as charlesfruitmarket, doorsteporganics, thelettuceshop and buyfruit that offer ‘Australian grown’ and organic produce. Read More »

How can I change a fertiliser formulation?

July 1, 2015
Rick Donnan

I have recently gotten into hydroponics and came across your blog containing much detailed information. I am trying to move away from buying expensive pre-mixed solutions to making my own. I have a query about DIY soluble fertilisers and hope you could help.

I might buy the following fertiliser: N = 6%; P2O5 = 12%; K2O = 36%; MgO = 2.5%; SO3 = 10%; Ca = 0%. It also includes trace elements B, Cu, Fe, Mo, Mn, Zn.

I want to upgrade the N content to 20 and P to 18. What do I need to buy to do that? Also I have seen all commercial soluble fertilisers do not have Calcium, so how do I add this to my mix and in what dosage? Will adding Calcium affect the NPK?   Answer by RICK DONNAN
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